The Entitlement of Belonging

I have been quite stirred by all the ugly, hostile, misogynistic energy flying around in our faces. I believe there is something more powerful happening here than the current clown show. I believe there is an awakening taking place. The rug is being pulled back, the muck exposed, and we are being extended an invitation to flush this energy out and heal this seeping wound.

In many of the women that I have been working with lately, I have noticed certain symptoms have been coming up. Unspecified anxiety, fear of the future, irregular cardiac rhythms, tightness in diaphragm and gut, and feelings of restlessness. I have come to think of this as Donald Trump Syndrome.

I am not about to get political with this post. Trump is a symbol and a symptom. The energy of this pattern runs far deeper, and is way older and more insidious than the current poster boy has claim to.

I am talking about the psycho-spiritual energetic perversion of masculine entitlement and all the ways that it has subtly, as well as blatantly, infiltrated our culture. “Boys will be boys” is the motto of this pattern, and for an eon or more, women have been expected to turn the other cheek, look the other way, make excuses, ignore, and adapt in every way conceivable to the inappropriate use of this energy.

This shows up in how women are taught how to avoid being raped, rather than teaching men to keep unwanted attention to themselves, how the most common question asked in a male-on-female assault to the woman is, “Well, what were you doing?”

How we somehow just assume that men can’t handle their feelings or even know what they are feeling, and so we should just accommodate and adapt to their unresolved mommy/daddy issues—not mention thousands of years of sending our boys and men to war. Praising them for destroying themselves, telling them that is brave. Instilling in them values that ululate with violence and terror and the objectification of everything.

And here is where WE are failing men. Boys are expected to become men without actually having any real men to model themselves after. For years, they have been asked to tough it up, suck it up, and “BE A MAN!” instead of just being a sweet tender little boy who’s trying to figure out the complexities involved in living in a human body. So they armor up, they subvert their feelings, they become rough and angry and stuck in aggressive patters against themselves and others, and the cycle continues.

Meanwhile, the expectations put on women become more and more plasticized. There is the pressure to not show any signs of aging, and an insane drive to be perfect. Women now have to “be it all” and look great while doing it. This obscene emphasis on prettiness suffocates us and is a surface expression of beauty, which is a virtue that goes further than skin deep.

Beauty is depth itself. It encompasses the totality of the expression of someone or something, it is multifaceted, and it can be dark and frightening as well as light and appealing. Beauty is primal—it belongs to no one and it cannot be bought or sold. It endures in love and in our actions. It doesn’t come out of a tube, and it is the truth of your soul.

What I am calling Donald Trump Syndrome doesn’t see that, cannot feel it. With a DTS infection in place, life is objectified. Women are property, Natives are nuisances and walls are the solution to all of our problems.

I know this man is not the source of this pattern, but he is highlighting it. He is standing under the spotlight and the rug is being pulled back; we can see and feel the result of adapting to this energy for millennia.

I say to every woman and every man who cares for women and for the feminine in himself, that it is not okay to “grab women by the pussy!” To kiss them, touch them without their permission, to manipulate them to your own purposes for your own satisfaction. I will not leave the women out who play host to this pattern either, for it is not a gender-biased thing. It’s not okay to do this to men, either.

It’s time to give back people their responsibility for their own bodies! It’s not okay to presume that you know what is best for someone else’s body. It’s not okay to mandate what a woman is allowed to do with her own body. We are charged with the care for our bodies and therefore have the right to decide what we will or will not put in them. What will or won’t be done to them, forced upon or through them. This is not the place for a government edict; this is CHOICE at its most personal.

And here is another CHOICE that I believe we are coming to, the choice of: Will we or will WE not harbor these hostile energies in our bodies, in our psyches? Will we continue to adapt, to feel our heart rates race, our arteries clog, as we close ourselves off to the truth of our inherent creative power? Will we continue to make adjustments for this syndrome, allowances, with terms like “boys will be boys” as an excuse for every intolerable violation under the sun? Will we continue to police each other so effectively that we become the patriarchal distortion without need for an outer authority to further inflict containment upon us? Will we keep teaching our daughters that “all men want is sex,” raising them to believe that therein lies their value, or that they dare not attempt real intimacy, as guys are only after one thing? Will we continue to pass our bodies off as commodities to the highest bidder, be it the food, pharmaceutical, or beauty industry?

Or…will we claim our power?

These are the questions that bring up my uncomfortable feelings. These are the questions that are begging us to ask, “Am I healthy within my current story, or do I need to change? Do I like where I stand in this culture, what I agree to, what I represent? Who am I? How do I FEEL? What Gifts want to come through me? What do I need to acknowledge, to challenge, to release, to be FREE?”

We each have it within us to reach what has been called apotheosis, the state of divine inhabitance, but part of maturation is confrontation. We have to be willing to confront the energies, beliefs, patterns, and identities that are keeping us small, that hold us in immaturity. We have to be willing to look at those patterns, first in ourselves, and say, “This is unacceptable! I will not be silent, I will not be polite, I will not accept any more insults to this precious life. I WILL stand up for myself, for my right to be here, to be love, to create, to thrive. I WILL consciously, playfully engage in life and all Her beauty. Today I will be tender, I will be vulnerable, I will be brave. I will claim my belonging.”

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About the Author | Justice Bartlett

Justice is the founder of EmBody Me, which focuses on heart-centered transformation and living. She is passionate about living fully and presently in the body, in joy, peace, ease, and comfort. Through her work, she invites you to fall in love with your being, your body, and your life.

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